Pet Poison Prevention

For more than 50 years and since its inception by Congress in 1961, the third week in March has been designated as National Pet Poison Prevention Week. This year it falls on March 17-23, and the veterinarians and toxicology experts at Pet Poison Helpline are urging everyone to remember the four-legged members of the family, as they are among the most vulnerable.

Pet Poison Prevention Tulsa OK“Twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, and 365 days a year, we receive calls from distressed pet owners  across the country,” said Ahna Brutlag, DVM, MS, DABT and assistant director at Pet Poison Helpline. “In addition to dealing with the stress of an emergency situation, they are often forced to cope with feelings of regret in light of a mishap that, in most cases, could have been avoided. It takes only a few minutes to educate yourself on how to pet-proof appropriately and avoid the inevitable heartache that so often happens when a beloved pet is accidentally poisoned.”

Awareness is the key to preventing poisoning emergencies. Almost 91 percent of calls to Pet Poison Helpline in 2012 involved dogs – a testament to dogs’ curious nature and indifference to eating just about anything. Of these calls, nearly half were for dogs that ingested human medications. It’s clearly wise to keep medications out of their reach, but there are many other common, household substances toxic to dogs. The veterinarians at

Pet Poison Helpline perused their records and below are the five most common toxins that poisoned dogs in 2012.

Human Medications

43 percent of calls to Pet Poison Helpline in 2012 were for dogs that ate over-the-counter (OTC) or prescription medications. The majority of them involved antidepressants such as Prozac, Paxil, Celexa and Effexor, and common OTC drugs containing acetaminophen (e.g. Tylenol®) and  NSAIDs (e.g. Advil®, Aleve® and Motrin), which can cause serious harm to dogs when ingested.

Read more about Pet Poison Prevention at http://www.petpoisonhelpline.com